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Rogann in Peoria, IL

I am 49 year-old female. I have been living in my parent’s home for 1 year.

There is obvious (to me) black mold in their finished basement, on the drywall, behind the baseboards, due to repeated episodes of water getting in the foundation, completely soaking the carpet. The color is black and has foul smell. I suspect the carpet is full of mold as well and in the air.

My father passed away 6 months ago, and I am the only sibling that can live with my mother, so moving out is not an option (under any other circumstance, I most certainly would).

My problem is, my brother has power of attorney over our mother, and insists that I am wrong about the mold. That he can “fix” the problem, but has suggested to her that she only needs the carpet cleaned. The carpet is at least 20 years old, and has been wet/dry countless times.

I personally am experiencing chronic coughing and when my grandkids spend the weekend they have constant runny nose/coughing/other symptoms.

My father passed away from lung cancer, but for several years prior to diagnosis, he had a chronic cough that was diagnosed as allergies even though he had NO history of allergies or asthma. When I mentioned it could have been a symptom of mold exposure, it was ignored.

Questions:

I called the local health department and was told the State of IL has “no mold program”, Whatever that means. I was calling to ask about available testing, laws, insurance questions, etc…

I can pay for air quality testing, as I feel that a complete assessment isn’t necessarily needed due to obvious visible signs. Can the carpet be tested as well? I am trying to get this accomplished without my mother knowing, but I’ve ruled out online test kits because I don’t know which ones are trustworthy.

Lastly, is there a medical test I can ask my doctor to perform that proves mold exposure?

Michael in Oklahoma City


A view of the ceiling in the apartment.

I have been addressing leaks to our apartment since Sept. 2010 along with the uprising mold colonies. The owner/management of this apartment complex has ignored our concerns with this issue. I contacted an attorney as well as Fair Housing. I also hired a licensed mold inspector and the results were astounding. Toxic mold is throughout this apartment. The outcome of this law suit is favorable. The owners will have to pay all relocating costs which was filed with Fair Housing and also our attorney is filing a large sum of monetary damages in the court of law. Anyone that has health issues with mold should take action against any owner of rental property due to the owner/management’s neglect. Stand up and make a difference. Let slumlords know they can’t get away with such neglect.